D3 drought in the Dakotas expands

The drought monitor report released April 15 for April 6 to 13, indicated some relief of drought conditions across the top corn growing states. However, drought intensified in the Dakotas.

Extreme drought in northwest Iowa were reduced to severe drought conditions. The severe D2 conditions cover portions of 12 counties in the Hawkeye state. Overall, about 39% of the state is suffering from abnormally dry conditions, or worse.

Across the Mississippi River, in Illinois, abnormally dry conditions in the northeast part of the state shrunk slightly. Moderate drought persists in Lake and McHenry counties. Overall, about 16% of the state reported abnormally dry conditions, or worse.

Drought conditions in Nebraska were relatively unchanged. The entire western half of the Cornhusker state reported abnormally dry conditions, or worse. Severe drought continues for about 7% of the state and is focused in the southwest region.

Indiana’s abnormally dry and moderate drought acres cover about 18% of the state. The moisture-stressed areas are exclusively in the northern third of the Hoosier state.

Precipitation delivered significant drought relief through central Minnesota. The latest drought monitor map indicates less than half the state reported moisture stress, down from about 85% abnormally dry or worse the week prior. Severe drought covers less than 1% of the state and is focused in the northwest corner, affecting parts of Kittson and Marshall counties.

Map of Minnesota drought conditions
Photo credit: U.S. Drought Monitor

Kansas reported no change in the drought monitor from the week prior. Severe drought still affects five counties, about 2% of the state overall, in the west. More than 75% of the state reported drought-free conditions.

Although a small area in eastern South Dakota reported drought relief, the extreme drought acreage continued to expand across the northwest part of the state. Now, just shy of 20% of South Dakota is suffering from D3 extreme drought.

Map of South Dakota drought conditions
Photo credit: U.S. Drought Monitor

Abnormally dry acreage was reduced slightly in Ohio according to the latest drought monitor report. Moisture stress continues to be isolated to the northern part of the state. About 16% of Ohio’s acres reported severe drought.

For the fourth week in a row, Missouri reported no drought conditions.

Precipitation brought significant relief to abnormally dry areas of Wisconsin, according to the latest drought monitor. The northern part of the state now has adequate moisture. The state’s moderate drought conditions are isolated to Racine and Kenosha counties in the southeast corner.

Map of Wisconsin drought conditions
Photo credit: U.S. Drought Monitor

Across the Great Lakes in Michigan, drought conditions in the upper peninsula saw some improvement. However, there was no change in the moderate drought conditions covering about 17% of the state, primarily the southern counties.

For the seventh straight week, Kentucky reported no drought conditions.

Extreme drought grew to consume another 5% of North Dakota. According to the latest drought monitor report, more than 75% of the state is categorized D3 extreme drought.

Map of North Dakota drought conditions
Photo credit: U.S. Drought Monitor

Little changed in Texas where about 9% of the state faces D4 exceptional drought. Just a handful of northern and eastern counties did not report moisture stress at some level.

For the third week in a row, Tennessee reported no drought conditions.

In Pennsylvania, moisture stress continues to be focused in the northwest corner of the state. Although moderate drought still covers about 9% of the state, abnormally dry acreage shrunk slightly from the report prior.

There was no change to drought conditions in Colorado where exceptional drought covers about 15% of the state. The entire state is abnormally dry, or worse.

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